March 29, 2009

dear pat sajak,

so a funny thing happened this evening: pat sajak commented on my last blog. yes, the real pat sajak. at first, i was skeptical. i thought "this has to be fake. no way pat sajak has the time to comment on my blog. it's gotta be an imposter."

but then, since i am a detective, i got to the bottom of it...

i checked my sitemeter's recent history by location.

second listing down: baltimore, maryland. that one had to be the source of the comment because the one before it was my own visit from manhattan, ks.

then i checked his profile on wikipedia to discover the following line: "The couple splits time between Severna Park, Maryland, and Manhattan Beach, California."

severna park is 20 miles south of baltimore.

so unless there is someone in pat sajak's hometown posing as the man himself, the commenter was indeed the real pat sajak.

gulp. holy smokes.

pat, i am seriously hoping that you will read this follow-up blog as well. i mean no disrespect to your life as a game show host. clearly you worked hard to achieve the life you have attained and it was wrong of me to reduce your hard work to sheer luck. my hope is that you'll accept my apology - because i also must inform you of the following four facts:

1. wheel of fortune is my absolute favorite television show. i have watched it since i was a small child. my favorite episode of all time: when there was a contestant named "A". that's probably been 15 years ago now.
2. i have applied to be on your show three different times. i even claimed that my favorite nascar driver was jeff gordon in an attempt to make it on to "nascar week". i hate nascar.
3. i have officially joined the Wheel Watchers Club. my SpinID is AC6480822.
4. i am a generally nice person. in fact, i found out today that there is a facebook application called "nicest person" and i am currently leading in votes among my friends. i will admit, if there was an application called "most conceted person" i'd be in the running for that as well.

i hope you were not offended by my previous post pat. you (as well as vanna and the show itself) have been very important to my evening ritual for many many years, and it pains me to think that i have insulted my favorite show's host.

so with great sincerity i say, i'm sorry. i hope this blog finds you well. see you tomorrow night at 6:30 PM CST.


p.s. - i suppose it wouldn't hurt to ask - is there any way you could pull some strings to get me on the show? it would be a dream come true. thanks so much.

television personalities: how did they get so lucky?

how do people like pat sajak and alex trebek do it? i mean, they're celebrities now, but where do they come from? the only reason they're celebrities is because they started hosting a television game show that just happened to take off. trebek has been hosting since 1984 and sajak since 1983, but before that? not much. sajak was a radio dj in college and in vietnam, and trebek hosted a handful of failure game shows before jeopardy, but then they just happened to land a jackpot hosting gig...i could totally do their jobs. where's my big break?

those are just the oldies. here are a few of the current guys who are rising to stardom out of nowhere:

ben bailey - cash cab - prior to the show, bailey was a comedian doing after-hours story telling while he was in college. then suddenly some big shot lady thinks he's funny, gives him a job doing stand up in los angeles, and then a few years later he's hosting the american version of cash cab. also he is a licensed cabbie.

billy mays - infomercial allstar - okay, he's not a game show host, but he's definitely a rising television star. the guy skipped out on college and just started as a salesman on the streets of atlantic city. then he started doing sales at home shows and state fairs. one day the founder of Orange Glo International happens to see his sales style, likes it, puts him in a commercial. suddenly in 2009 he's in something like 819 informercials and lives in a $1.8M home in florida.

i could do those jobs. things like going pro in basketball - i don't have those skills - but i have game show hosting skills. now all i have to do is meet some big timer who will catapult me to stardom in a moment.

maybe i'll just spend my sunday afternoon watching basketball and brainstorming terrific game show ideas. like this one where people dress up as toy story characters, run up a ramp, get repeatedly pummeled by rolling soda cylinders and end up in a rectangular pool of icy water.

absolute genius. excessive yen and major stardom for woody overnight.


props to marko for the vid.

March 27, 2009

campus musicals with ELO.

one of the worst things about spring break: i was 100 miles away from the circulation desk at Hale Library which is where i needed to be if i wanted to pick up the albums that showed up with my name on them. there was a quick sharp pain in my heart when i checked my email on the 16th and it said "interlibrary loan available to check out at..." as the subject line and knew i had to wait another week to pick it up. talk about torture.

of the albums i had to hold out til the 23rd to pick up, this has definitely had the most success on my iPod* thus far:
prior to this pick-up, only two tracks from ELO graced my itunes library: "don't bring me down" (an old favorite of mine) and "livin' thing" (which i only ever discovered because of a delightful JC Penny commecial from a few years ago). little did i know just how great the other 18 songs on this album would be.

here's the true greatness of this album though: track 1. "mr. blue sky" is the perfect theme to walk on campus to - not because it's the perfect rhythm for my steps or because it makes me groove like "billie jean" or "around the world/harder better faster stronger" does - but because it's absolutely hilarious to think about the different people you pass on campus breaking out in random song and singing the various high/low/harmony/robot vocals. including but not limited to:

- football players on harmonies
- professors on percussion
- freshman with his backpack on too tight walking at an incredible rate can take the the background panting just cause it makes sense.
- ROTC fellas on high notes
- an international student - probably a cute asian girl - can take the lowest of the low parts
- dr. linder can take the guitar solo.
- the fluke is the duke of soul...yeah.^

man it's a riot. give it a try sometime. essentially all you have to do is try your best to challenge stereotypes through the music...this is also the exact plot of High School Musical.

if you want me to email you the song i will. otherwise you can watch that fantastic video that accompanies it over and over...just lemme know.


* - that is, my brand new 120 gig ipod. thanks dear.
^ - please tell me someone out there catches this perfectly utilized reference. anyone? anyone? also i'm mixin it up and utilizing the carrot^ instead of the double asterisk**.

March 25, 2009

maurice sendak.

this will be epic.

this will also likely be the greatest movie to ever happen to me since the dark knight...except between now and then the dark knight will first be ousted by the half-blood prince. so ultimately this will be the best movie to ever happen to me since july 17, 2009.

there is massive anticipation surrounding this movie for me. can you say midnight showing? ahh i cannot wait.


sports bit.

i haven't talked about sports in a while. let's do that today.

1. john buck is batting .434 with a .525 OBP in spring training. mike macfarlane eat your heart out.

2. it's looking very likely that the chiefs will do one of two things in this year's nfl draft: with the third overall pick they will either take linebacker aaron curry from wake forest (#1 ranked player overall) or - if the lions really take OT jason smith over QB matthew stafford - they may trade down with a team like the 49ers for a later round pick and pull someone totally different. i have a feeling the chiefs may be looking to simply draft the best player available - curry, michael crabtree, eugene monroe, brian orakpo, etc. we'll see.

3. my bracket is decently intact. 12/16 isn't bad. especially when my elite 8 are all still around. pitt looks like a bum pick to win it though. favorite games so far: siena over ohio state and oklahoma state over tennessee. also i'm proud of my WKU pick. i'm also proud of my VCU and NDSU picks even though they couldn't pull it off.

4. have you guys seen how josh freeman has rocketed up the QB prospects list? he's jumped pat white and graham harrell and is now listed #3 in QBs behind stafford and mark sanchez (who's draft stock is slowly sliding). it's fun to say that i hung out with him in my Wealth, Power and Privilege class just three months ago.

just a couple quick thoughts. i'll quit blogging now. i have a life you know.


March 24, 2009

pro d.

so spring break happened. you might think that my lack of blogging over the last 11 days was because i went somewhere far away and desolate where i had no internet access and was constantly preoccupied with other things. this would be false. i have very little to report regarding my break from school.

i did purchase a pro destroyer though. seriously heavy artillery. just holding it gives me a rush of adrenaline. it's like i have a nolan ryan fastball harnessed in a 171 gram disc. or a happy gilmore drive. or a john buck big fly. or a doug flutie drop kick. or all of them combined. if pinky and the brain ever succeeded in taking over the world - this is what it would feel like.

boom goes the dyno.

also, do you ever feel like a day is an important day but you can't figure out why? like maybe it's someone's birthday. or it was the deadline for something. or you have a bill to pay and that's the last day to get it in. today is one of those days for me. march 23rd*. what is it?! it's killing me.

and i did not forget to pay the water bill.


* - alas. it's march 24th. thanks jenna.

March 13, 2009

the number 23.

my birthday falls on the best day of the year: march 14. you can argue all you like, but it's the truth. here are just four of the reasons:

1. pi day - ever since i learned how to calculate circumference my birthday has been celebrated in childish math classrooms all over. it's celebrated with cute activities involving circular pies which ultimately result in a delicious key lime snack.

2. spring break - falls nearly every year on my birthday. i have spent more birthdays traveling than i have spent birthdays at home (1 in chicago, 3 in monterrey, 1 in guatemala, and about 12 in oklahoma.) i used to think that i really wanted to have school on my birthday so that i could bring funfetti cupcakes for everyone to enjoy. i was so jealous of everyone else who got to bring treats for the class on their big day. but then i finally had school on the 14th for the first two years of college and was presented with a combined 5 exams, 1 presentation, 1 paper and 1 course project. i quickly realized that not bringing cupcakes was just fine. besides, i didn't have to share them this way.

3. a week after MLB tickets go on sale - the perfect amount of time to buy a ticket package, slap a bow on it and give it as a gift a week later. the royals might as well just post "get adam a 9 game pack for his birthday next week" because what else are people getting gifts for this time of year? easter? spring break? pi day? no. those are not gift exchanging holidays. it is only for people like me who have the good fortune of celebrating their birth with 9 royals games of their choice. (there is no need to rush to the K for's already been done.)

4. conference tournaments/first round of the ncaa tournament - depending on the year. this year the conference championships fall on my birthday. in past years it has been the first round. either way, the hype surrounding college basketball reaches its first of many climaxes on my big day. btw: did you guys SEE that game last night?! if you have to ask what game then the answer is no. one of the best college basketball games of all time. goodness.

also it's my birthday. so i turn 23 tomorrow, and it's good to know that while birthdays become increasingly less exciting as one gets older, there isn't a chance mine can ever flounder. that's a combination for a great day every single year.


March 09, 2009

free movie month in quick review.

i'm watching the final movie of FMM. yes, i know that FMM ended when february did, but it's a week rental. also since i have no interest in actually giving blockbuster any business following this month, being a little later isn't really an issue.

so here i am, on the 9th of march, watching the last of my free movies. it has been quite a month. i did very little with the suggestions you made, and for that i am sorry. in fact, as i review the list of movies that i watched during this free spree i have to say that i'm not very impressed with my selections. mostly comedies, but there were still quite a few gems.

i'm not going to give a lengthy detailed review of each of them, cause that would be beyond boring both for you to read and for me to write. so i'll simply list the movies, along with a rating* and maybe a sentence or two max.

tropic thunder - OOO - robert downing jr. is hilarious and incredible but jack black's character was stupid and so was tom cruise's.

star wars: clone wars - OOO - once i got past the fact that this wasn't really star wars it was rather enjoyable for me. i just had to make sure i didn't associate it with the others too much.

traitor - OOOOO - oh man. don cheadle is freaking amazing.

babylon a.d. - _ - worst movie i've seen in 22 years, 11 months and 23 days.

the sting - OOOO - oh, but give me an old pro like a robert redford. oh, i'd jump into bed with him in a second.

the jerk - OOOOO - steve martin at his best. absolutely hilarious from start to finish. i finished it and wanted to watch it again, but i was trying to crunch in as many movies as possible. should've rented it instead of babylon ad...what a waste of zero dollars.

rushmore: - OO - i fell asleep and had to try again the next day. wes anderson

best in show - OOOO - this movie has inspired me to try to make up my own mockumentary. who knows what about, but i was near tears in parts of this movie. take away parker posey and this movie gets 5 O's.

king of kong - OOOOO - okay, this wasn't the first time i'd seen this movie...more like the tenth. but this is the best documentary of all time. here's my review from feb 08: never surrender.

superbad - O - getting girls drunk so you can have sex with them is not cool, and it is all this movie is about. the only redeeming part of this movie was any moment when michael cera is running.

semi pro - OOO - had about 4 scenes that absolutely made the movie. of the super-dumb anchorman wannabe movies...this one is the best.

dr. strangelove - OO - 1964 comedy. not sure i was on the same page with the humor throught the movie, but james earl jones is in it and that makes it at least one more O.

stomp the yard - OOO - this movie was talked up waaaay too much. it does not measure up to "step up" and/or "step up 2 the streets" but it's still great.

man on wire - OOOO - how in the world were they able to get all those amazing photos and all that original footage? the redramatizations were pretty lame though - as all redramatizations are.

the shining - OO - well shot. and jack nicholson was good. but i was extremely bored, weirded out and confused.

so that's the list. 15 movies. 14 new. 1 repeat. zero dollars. sounds like a deal to me. again, sorry if i didn't take any of your suggestions. it's nothing personal, i just ended up finding my own picks before i had to resort to help. good thing those other choices will forever be listed on the world wide web in case i need a movie idea.


* - i have chosen to use O's as my unit of rating because it's the tic-tac-toe symbol that is not utilized by the porn industry. i wouldn't want to give tropic thunder a "XXX" but a "OOO" is just fine. also representing the number of dollars i spent for each movie.

March 06, 2009

job hunting.

"sometimes life throws you lemons."
- my buddy dan after stealing my SkyMall magazine on a flight to atlanta.

upon quick review, this comment makes no sense. it's a haphazard mashing of two common phrases: "sometimes life throws you a curveball" and "if life gives you lemons, make lemonade." however, this nonsensical mashing seem to be spot on how i feel about my life right now.

my plan for the future was thrown a serious curveball on monday. i got a phone call notifying me that my past church of employment doesn't have the money to pay for an internship for me this upcoming year. i've been planning on this as my first step out of college for the last 3 years, so it's a rather tough pill to swallow.

i got off the phone and was flooded with uncertain questions about my immediate future. questions i still don't konw the answers to 5 days later. i emailed and called some of my closest friends and relatives to notify them of the situation, and with every contact i got sadder and sadder about the situation. i was frustrated and annoyed and really scared.

then i realized that apparently this isn't the path God has for me. maybe it's in youth minstry, maybe it's doing video work, maybe it's neither - i have no idea - but He does and that's what is impotant. i also realized that crying and whining about it does nothing beneficial, so i decided to move on to step two: finding something else.

i'm still on step two. it's a bit of a thinker. it's also a bit of a multi-part step. i have to inform a bunch of people that i'm job hunting, decide which jobs are available and which i would be interested in, i have to figure out what one can do with a sociology degree, i need to decide to what degree i want to do youth ministry, video work, or any other job under the sun.

this is where the other phrase comes in: "when life hands you lemons, make lemonade." my hope and prayer is that in the next few months some metaphorical lemon will find its way into my life. maybe someone knows of a job opportunity that i'd be perfect for, maybe it's working part-time in a coffee shop to pay the bils, maybe it's pursuing videography or maybe it's something i've never even considered before. regardless, i need to be on the look out, and when those lemons present themselves i hope and pray that i can grab hold of them, squeeze the heck out of them and make some terrific lemonade.

so there's hope here - this isn't necessarily a curveball - that's such a negative outlook on the sitch. it's also a huge lemon - that's how i'm going to look at it - as a terrific opportunity to find something out there that i love. its exciting from this less terrifying, but exciting for sure.

i pray that it is out there and i hope that you'll pray with me. feel free to let me know if you have any ideas or know of any open opportunities. k thx bai.


current musical interests.

i'm slowly adopting classic rhythm and blues as a large part of my musical preferences. i've been near obsessed with my etta james pandora playlist over the last few weeks, and i'm putting forth maximum interlibrary effort to establish new artists in my own personal library.

over the thanksgiving weekend, karlie and i took a trip to the blue room at 18th and vine with jon and colleen*. talk about incredible. yeah, i realize the blue room has been transformed into a near tourist attraction as a part of the jazz museum, but that doesn't mean the music they throw down isn't just as good.

anyway, over the last few weeks i've taken it upon myself to research the roots of this music - not necessarily the historical roots, but more the old school kings and queens of this music so i can understand influences on the artists of today. i'm a rookie here, and all i really know are the big names - otis redding, sam cooke, gladys knight, etta james, ray charles, etc - but it's a great place to start i suppose. add these too the list of artists that are among my "favorites".

i was asked who my favorite musical group/artist is on wednesday in class. i panicked and said michael jackson - probably not the truth, but i needed to find an answer quickly that fell under the following criteria:

1. an artist everyone will have heard of so i dont have to field questions like "who are they?" or "what type of music is that?"
2. an artist that has an established career and could be received as someone who could do nothing to ruin their career at this point.**
3. an artist for which i would not receive any stereotyped judgements. i'm sure you can figure out for yourself what artists receive ill-conceived judgements in your mind. i'm not going to hurt anyone's feelings by listing my own personal thoughts. (i suppose one could argue that MJ = littleboylover and freakshow, but that's neither relevant or worth my time defending.)

anyway, i digress. the point of this explanation is this: i feel like all of the artists i've listed above fall under those three descriptions. i wish i hadn't panicked and answered MJ, but i also wish i could honestly answer that one of these is my favorite artist. i would be proud of myself if i could make such a statement. as i keep putting work into my current musical exploration, i hope a few artists can catapult themselves into my top list of artists.

wamptown suggests sonny rollins. i'll look into that next.


* - hey cous, if you read this, you need a blog.

** - sub-question: is it in fact unfair to criticize a formerly great artist for his latter day sins, is it better to burn out or fade away? i submit that it is better to fade away.